Surprise, surprise. Huston Street gave up two more late game home runs, his ninth and tenth in 25.2 innings this year, and the Padres lost to the Dodgers 3-1.
Instead of thrashing San Diego’s incompetent bullpen, I will mention how Andrew Cashner was downright impressive this afternoon, and it has been quite enjoyable to watch him develop into one of the better starters in San Diego’s rotation. At this point, I am elated that the Friars unloaded Anthony Rizzo and received Cashner in return. At this point, as long as the right-hander can stay healthy, he could emerge as one of the better young starters in the league.
Of course, Cashner was saddled a no-decision because his teammates could not help him out at the plate after Juan Uribe knocked in the only run of the game in the top of the seventh on an opposite field double. Despite the no-decision, Cashner deserves kudos for his efforts this afternoon. Overall, the fire-baller pitched eight strong innings, struck out two, and pitched to contact extremely well. Sadly, his teammates failed him miserably today.
In my humble opinion, “pathetic” is too nice of a word to describe San Diego’s offensive production over the last two games. I mean, scoring only one run off of a fired-up former All-Star like Zack Greinke was understandable. Yet to not plate a single guy off of Chris Capuano, on short rest no less, in six innings was nothing short of shameful.
Carlos Quentin gave us fans some hope when tied the game up in the bottom of the seventh with a mammoth home run to left field. After he was stifled by Greinke yesterday, Carlos redeemed himself this afternoon with his game-tying blast. Unfortunately for the Friars, nobody was on base when he made contact, and the team still needed to manufacture another run. That task of course proved too difficult, because the Friars could not come through in the clutch.
An extra run or two would not have mattered however, because Street blew the game when he allowed a solo home runs to former Padre Adrian Gonzalez and Hanley Ramirez in the top of the ninth. I understand that Street is the team’s closer, but at what point will Bud Black pull the trigger and utilize someone else in that role?
10 home runs in 26.1 innings is nothing short of ridiculous, and this team can ill afford to blow late-game leads and ties to divisional opponents. Gopher-balls in tight games are complete and total “no-nos” for closers, and I would have to believe that Black might elect to try someone else in the ninth inning of games very soon.
Hopefully the team’s hitters can turn things around, especially because they will face off against Cliff Lee tomorrow evening at home. The Friars are now back at .500, and they will be unable to play competitive baseball for much longer if their bullpen and hitters continue to fail them in important spots.
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